Parting. Graham (left) worked with Healy.

A single large U.S. government project that Skanska AB declines to identify is responsble for most of the loss. The move came as Healy was negotiating a new employment contract after his current one expired Dec. 31, say industry sources.

The departure ends Healy’s long association with Skanska AB CEO Stuart Graham, who hired him to join Sordoni Construction Co., Parsippany, N.J., more than 20 years ago. Graham and Healy were owners and stayed on when Skanska acquired Sordoni in 1990 (ENR 5/3/90 p. 14).

Skanska AB Executive Vice President Johan Karlstrom temporarily will fill Healy’s position, but the company is seeking a replacement, says Graham. Karlstrom will be in charge of U.S. operations.

Overall, Skanska was solidly profitable in 2004, with roughly $540 million in earnings. Graham says the company’s performance in 2004 was held back by the losses in U.S. buildings and by a British LNG proj-ect for which about $98 million in writedowns were recorded. "It shows you how tough this business is," says Graham. "We had a couple of unfortunate project results."

Healy says his reluctance to leave caused his departure to be termed a dismissal. "I did not want my people to think that I had abandoned them," he says. "It’s a great company with wonderful people." Healy has started a consulting firm, Breakthrough Projects, based in Chester, N.J. Graham says Healy made "tremendous contributions to the growth and profitability of Skanska in the U.S."

Skanska USA Building Inc., which Healy headed, eventually became the largest business unit in the Skanska AB construction and real estate giant. Healy says one key accomplishment was transforming the different operating units into a cohesive whole under one name and making top managers’ bonuses all dependent on the unit’s performance.

rooklyn-born engineer Mike Healy’s long successful run with Skanska AB, where he was a key player in expanding the firm’s $3-billion-year U.S. buildings unit, came to an unhappy end Feb. 1 with his dismissal. The Sweden-based contractor says it wants new leadership after Healy’s unit lost $56 million in 2004.